James McCann delivers off bench in ‘big’ Mets move

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CINCINNATI — James McCann had a good idea he would be involved Monday night, even before he was called to pinch hit in the eighth inning.

An inning earlier, the Reds had turned to lefty Amir Garrett. At the time McCann was alerted his bat might be needed. With another lefty, Josh Osich, called on for the eighth and Tomas Nido’s spot in the order arising, McCann got his chance and delivered a go-ahead, two-run homer.

“Our staff has been on top of moves really from Day 1,” McCann said after the Mets won 15-11 in 11 innings at Great American Ball Park. “If there’s been surprises, I don’t know that anybody has been caught off guard.”

McCann returned to the plate in the 10th inning and stroked an RBI single that brought in the automatic runner from second base and gave the Mets a 10-9 lead.

McCann
James McCann watches his two-run homer against the Red on Monday night.
AP

Nido started behind the plate for a second straight game because team brass liked the manner he handled the pitching staff a day earlier and wanted to keep his bat in the lineup (he had two hits in that game against the Pirates). Nido doubled in the fourth inning.

“McCann and Nido are both really good hitters,” said bench coach Dave Jauss, who managed in place of the suspended Luis Rojas. “McCann is really good against lefties also and dangerous in this park. … We have done this before. It turned out results-wise to be a big move, but it’s not a big move.”

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